Jump to content
Awoo.

The current tone of the Sonic game series


Blazey Firekitty

Recommended Posts

Sonic Adventure 2 was, arguably, the first game to introduce truly "dark" elements into the Sonic game series.

Shadow the Hedgehog and Sonic 2006 exaggerated this darkness, and this is partially why they became so infamous.

Unleashed saw the return of a lighter, more simplistic storyline.

Do you feel that this is appropriate for the series, a sign of a return to its roots? Or do you feel that it is a devolution of sorts?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No. It's just fine like that. In fact, it's perfect for the series to keep this lighthearted tone it has right now. SA2 / Shadow / Nextgen's darkness was downright unnecessary, and if people really wanted overly stereotypical "dark and edgy" storylines, they could always crowd Naruto.

So yes. Sonic is fine as-is. Cartoony designs ftw.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^what he said.

Sonic has never dark. It was always light, from Sonic, Eggman's, badnick's and setting's design, to the simple storylines of the classics. I'm not against deep storylines, but darkness has no place in the franchise, or at least, as far as Sonic is concerned. SA2 had a darker storyline, but Sonic (& friends) didn't have drama. Shadow in the end also grew out of that drama.

We can have stories without drama and with some meaning.

Edited by redmenace
Link to comment
Share on other sites

SA2 didn't strike me as terribly dark in the way that Shadow and 2K6 did. Sure, there was a murderous backstory and a plan to cause the apocalypse in the name of revenge, but the actual presentation of the story and characters felt like typical bright, optimistic Sonic fare- The colorful, likable characters all interacted in a bright, upbeat adventure!

Then Shadow the Hedgehog went for gritty darkness as a whole, rather than as a subtle undercurrent to the storyline. This, I feel, is darkness in a very exaggerated and bad way. 2K6 was less bad, but still overdone.

Unleashed was a breath of fresh air, going back to a cartoonish lightheartedness that I feel the series works best with.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Both light and dark atmospheres are appropriate for Sonic, and while lighter atmospheres are more reminiscent of the Classic atmosphere (although personally I consider them neutral), the use of either or shouldn't be considered a reliable indicator of, or directly correlated with, the games' quality. After all, Heroes' and Unleashed's stories were, from a neutral standpoint, just as horribly written and convoluted as Shadow's and '06s. I'd much concern myself with whether or not Sonic Team is actually sticking to internal logic and keeping characters in character instead of whether or not a game is bright enough.

Edited by Nepenthe
  • Thumbs Up 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I personally like the idea of the Sonic franchise having a dark and edgy style. The fact that Sonic is a cartoon character but at the same time isn't one of those looney-toon wannabies that I often see today is one of the reasons why I never grew out of him. There is just something that I like in a series that takes the silly elements of a cartoon character and blends it in with a serious type of environment, such as our own world. That's also probably a big reason why I love the Kingdom Hearts franchise. I enjoyed the serious tone that Sonic Advtenture 2 had, and yes I also liked how Sonic was set in a realistic environment in Sonic 06. Althought ShTH's tone a found a bit riduculous, the overuse of the word "damn" is certainly not needed in a Sonic game. I didn't really care too much for Unleached's lightheartedness, I didn't hate it or anything, I just perfered SA2 and 06 style more.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A balance of two is never a bad thing. You have two games that represent the extreme end for Sonic game:

Heroes:

-it was unbearably cheesy and silly.

ShTH:

-it was unbearably dark and forced.

SA2 actually had that kind of balance when it comes to lighter and darker elements, while Sonic 06 was just silly in a cheesy or dark way.

There's a time and scene for a Sonic game to have comedic tones and ones for serious tones. But they have to remember that while it's a cartoon they can't go overboard with the cartooniness or and while they can have some serious elements they have to remember not to go to far.

A Sonic game that can combine both will really keep a lot of people into the story. Although the writers themselves need to step up there work, because a bad story is a bad story no matter how light or dark it is.

  • Thumbs Up 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

After all, Heroes' and Unleashed's stories were, from a neutral standpoint, just as horribly written and convoluted as Shadow's and '06s.

I'll grant you Heroes being something of a mess, but I'm not sure what you mean by Unleashed being convoluted. I don't mean that to be snarky, mind, I'm just genuinely curious as to why it would come across that way.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm hoping that Project Needlemouse gives us a simple and lighthearted tone that I feel that Sonic games need, while at the same time giving it a slight "edge" that makes it a little less "kid-friendly" and more "family friendly", meaning it can please just about anyone, it won't be too cheesy but it also won't be too over the top and edgy. Personally, I think Sonic Heroes would have had that perfect tone that Sonic games need if they just took out some of the really cheesy lines (Particularly the ones regarding the "power of teamwork") and had it so the characters didn't have awful, horrible written chit-chat mid-stage.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I liked Sonic Adventure 2's take on the extended Sonic storyline the best out of all of the 3D games, and it's probably the only context in which I would support the series to progress in a more story-based direction. Sonic Battle, incidentally enough, also did a great job expanding on this established motif, and had a pretty interesting storyline--perfectly tied into the events of ARK and Gerald Robotnik--to supplement the rather bland and repetitive gameplay. I didn't particular like the games that came after, though... Sonic Heroes was horribly presented in terms of story, Shadow the Hedgehog was deplorable, and Sonic 2k6 was downright embarrassing.

Ultimately, I prefer the series without a storyline, but the first few installments into the deep story genre weren't too bad and I wouldn't mind seeing proper takes on them more like Battle and SA2.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I prefer the Saturday morning cartoon plots. Something simple, not trying to be something other than what it is. Darkness does have a place in the series, but in the old games it was different. It's hard to explain. Back then you had dark futures and doomsday weapons, which was serious stuff for a cartoon hedgehog. But there were no revenge schemes or horrible family dramas going on in the background. That kind of melodrama isn't good for the series because it's something Sonic can't pull off. The game plots take themselves too seriously sometimes. The dark side of the classic series was pretty awesome. Stuff like a huge red Metal Sonic burning cities down was scary stuff. I think there's room for serious aspects in a Sonic plot, just like how you want your cartoon villain to be the meanest bastard around. There's development in that. So I think a new approach needs to be taken. There wasn't a lot of fun in the scripts for Shadow or '06, and Sonic is about fun. Not the holding hands and vomiting rainbows kind of Sonic Heroes fun. There's gotta be decent writers for this stuff at Sega. I thought Secret Rings and Unleashed had the kind of fun Sonic and story pace I'm talking about.

Edited by Ezra the Badnik
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sonic Adventure 2 had a wonderful tone. I loved the new darker story, but the thing is, it only really worked well in Sonic Adventure 2. Ever since, their attempts at Dark have been awful.

Sonic Unleahed had just the right tone, but maybe the endgame part tried a bit too hard to beef up the seriousness. And that's fine, but does the world really need to come that close to destruction at the hands of a giant Destoroyah look alike, Every Time? Really, I'd rather just chace Eggman through space... or have something more like the opening to Sonic Unleashed. THAT is the perfect ending to a game, but they used it as the intro instead. ( Maybe change the sequence where Eggman traps Super Sonic into one where he just escapes the exploding batteship instead, though, as leaving the scene as is wouldn't make for a good conclusion. )

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'll grant you Heroes being something of a mess, but I'm not sure what you mean by Unleashed being convoluted. I don't mean that to be snarky, mind, I'm just genuinely curious as to why it would come across that way.

I found quite a few problems with the story, the first being Chip's amnesia. Most of the time, it's believed that the cause of it was that Sonic fell on him. However, this was retconned as we later learn that his condition was due to being woken up too early. But if Chip had amnesia due to his early awakening, how did he manage to remember that he could've conjured a barrier that would've saved Sonic's life? Secondly, why didn't the trauma apparently caused by Sonic do anything significant to his memory? If anything, it should have knocked him back to senses instead of merely giving him yet another case of amnesia of only the past few seconds.

(I've been told that Sonic's impending doom could have caused a slight relapse in Chip, but it seems way too convenient. If anything, without prior knowledge that you could stop an object hurtling from space, a more natural reaction would have been to get out of the object's general area.)

Then there's the fact that the majority of storytelling was just completely dropped altogether. Between Chun-Nan and Adabat, there are no cutscenes detailing Sonic and Chip's journey minus openings to irrelevant boss fights and temple restorations. This means that the areas that we visit between these points feel tacked on beyond the travel angle, Chip's touching proclamation about their trip loses depth, and the opportunity for any development on his character as well as Sonic's internal dealing with the Werehog form was wasted. The loss is especially felt in the latter as the intentional reversal of Sonic's super powers at the hands of Eggman, things he takes significant pride in, should've had a more profound effect on him, and it was something I was hoping to see. But as it stands, the Amy cutscene and unlockable shorts are just cockteases.

A few other parts of the story that are actually there only provide me with questions: What was the significance of the Chun-Nan phoenix to the overall plot? Why was Chip scared to go into the Adabat temple? What in the world was speaking to him when he was sucked through the wall and into that limbo? In fact, what happened to activate such blatant dues ex machina in the first place? Who at Sonic Team thought that it was a good idea to make Chip into a prehistoric Gundam when the entire point of his personality and appearance was to be in direct contrast to Dark Gaia as Sonic is to his Werehog form?

All in all, I feel the story was badly done. Probably not as badly done as Sonic '06, but regardless it was an objective letdown, especially when Sonic Team claimed inspiration from Pixar.

(Ironically enough, I actually do like the story, at least what little of it there is. The dialogue is more tolerable from past games and sometimes even funny, Sonic and Chip's friendship had a sentimentality to it that was refreshing and not too cheesy, Chip's background shenanigans are spectacular, and animation-wise, both in-game and CGI cutscenes are excellently done. It's a fun little thing to watch. :))

Edited by Nepenthe
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's far too sporadic for me to make a simple comment on the tone of the games other than...

Go back to Heroes, please. Not dark, nice and classic, and can avoid all those lame plots we hate so so much.

(note: going back to Heroes tone =/= Super Power of Teamwork and no interesting stories; it can have SA2 depth while being mostly bright and cool)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you ask me, SA1 and 2 had the perfect balance in terms of tone. Relatively deep, serious stories on both accounts with a few slightly dark aspects, but it never became the overriding theme of the plot as it did in Shadow.

I've never played 06, but I think the plot for Unleashed was a bit too far the other way. I mean, the planet had been blown to pieces for crying out loud, and during the day people were happily going about their daily lives for the most part. I mean come on, there should be a limit to positive thinking, even if they do probably know that Sonic's going to save them anyway. D=

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As for me i prefer Sa2 kind of plot. Sonic heroes was too cheesy and Sonic unleashed was even more plain and cheesy. Sonic shouldn't be so childish, cause there are a lot of more adult fans like me. Shth was indeed too dark, but S06 was ok(and i like the plot of it very much) Keep Sa/Sa2/Sriders/Sriders zg tone and everything will be fine!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This many replies and yet no mention of Sonic Adventure 1? That game had the perfect tone for a storyline-driven Sonic game; namely a sort of "neutral" tone, similar to the classics. And when i say "neutral" im not saying that it felt bland or anything, no quite the contrary, the story was both exciting and well written. But it didn't feel either particularly "dark" a la Sonic Adventure 2 or Shadow the Hedgehog nor particulalry light a la Sonic Heroes or Sonic Unleashed. It just felt natural, it didn't make you think about how light or dark it was at all.

Other games in the series that i would say the same about are the Rush and Rivals games (of course the latter have awfully bad writing, but that's beside the point).

Edited by batson
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I prefer a Sonic storyline that is interesting, and can explore themes and characters geniunely maybe with some symbolism and messages sprinkled in, but not overly dark and gratey and doomful, not too serious, with a light-hearted tone that can be cartoony as well as deep when it needs to be.

I kinda' want a plot like Sonic Adventure 2's with the characterization and deeper meanings Sonic Adventure 1 had with the charm and light-tone cartoonishness Sonic Unleashed had.

A deeper but still light-hearted tale with good characterization and deeper meanings sprinkled in, but not the deepness of the plot to be so in-your-face and in the background for us as the player and fans to annualize. Maybe go the route of making the worlds tell the story like in the Sonic Genesis games maybe where events and locations in a stage can lay deeper meaning for players to investigate to progress the story (like in Sonic 3 how we watch Angel Islanbd burn from Tank bots, places in Hydrocity get flooded, the place having an Earthquake from Dr. Eggman, the lights going out by Knuckles, the Death Egg being constructed in Launch Base, etc).

That's how I'd do it anyways...

Edited by Dusk Golem
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Both would be fine, but lighthearted seems the way to go. Lighthearted stories tend to be simplistic, fun, takes itself less serious, and not filled with too many plotholes. Also, it pretty much fit Sonic, his personality, and his universe for the most part unlike dark and edgy stories. Lighthearted stories can be deep and be subtle in symbolism and other things as well.

As for dark and edgy stories, as said before, doesn't fit the Sonic franchise too well, but could still work. The problem is based on what we've seen so far with deep, dark stories in Sonic games that the writing/dialogue (story as well I guess) aren't good. ST's writers are pretty poor at executing a good dark storyline (even though they do good lighthearted ones, like SU), and should probably hire writers from a different game company to do the job. Or at least hire better writers for the team who can do a good job for both types of stories.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Again, darkness is not deepness. The two are separable.

A light story can be deep. A dark story can be flat. A skilfully-written lighthearted story that still has tons of intricate characterization and good dialog would be amazing. Pick any Mario RPG, as they're all great examples of "lighthearted yet deep" in my opinion.

  • Thumbs Up 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Again, darkness is not deepness. The two are separable.

A light story can be deep. A dark story can be flat. A skilfully-written lighthearted story that still has tons of intricate characterization and good dialog would be amazing. Pick any Mario RPG, as they're all great examples of "lighthearted yet deep" in my opinion.

And one's opinion of dark and deep vary. I think that SA2 and 06 were both (or atleast attempted to be both in 06's case =P), Battle and SA1 were deep and Shadow was dark.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

While I didn't mind the "darkness" present in Sonic '06, I think that SA2 had the perfect balance of light and dark. It actually quite reminds me of some of the earlier games, actually. Sonic the Hedgehog wasn't exactly the most "lighthearted" game in the series, nor was Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Actually, Sonic 3 is much more lighthearted that the first two games, and especially Sonic CD, which presents a very dark and gritty world normally, especially in the future events. I actually think SA2 is, at least light/dark wise, more like the classics than Sonic Adventure, which was just plain cheesy throughout most of the game.

Sonic Chronicles is quite similar to SA2 in that respect, as well. The game is quite humorous at times, but is still overall serious when it needs to be. And Sonic's always his typical joking self in both SA2 and Chronicles (this is something that Sonic does portray in SA, as well). If you want to get into in-game elements, then yes, Sonic Adventure is closer to the classics (minus HUB worlds).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This many replies and yet no mention of Sonic Adventure 1? That game had the perfect tone for a storyline-driven Sonic game; namely a sort of "neutral" tone, similar to the classics. And when i say "neutral" im not saying that it felt bland or anything, no quite the contrary, the story was both exciting and well written. But it didn't feel either particularly "dark" a la Sonic Adventure 2 or Shadow the Hedgehog nor particulalry light a la Sonic Heroes or Sonic Unleashed. It just felt natural, it didn't make you think about how light or dark it was at all.

I completely agree about SA1. There wasn't anything in the story where they really did an overkill. I also felt the story was delicately crafted, with the intertwining storylines and giving each character a motive that didn't feel forced. Plus I liked how they made it so Chaos affected each character in some way. A problem I had with SA2 wasn't just how dark it got, but it also got dark and cheesy; for instance I thought SA2 had alot of corny dialogue (mostly Sonic's dialogue) and also that it got over-dramatic at some points.

I think it would be cool to see the Sonic series embrace smart humor. For instance I think AoStH was a really well written show and is an example of how you can make Sonic funny (at least in my opinion). Though I wouldn't want them to embrace Crash Bandicoot-esque cartoon-ism either. So I want to see more of the humor in just the dialog, not slapstick style cutscenes.

Edited by Lava89
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

You must read and accept our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy to continue using this website. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.